Interview – Josh Medsker


Please tell us a bit about yourself.
I was born and raised in Alaska, but I’ve lived in the lower 48 since 2000. My wife and I met in Austin, Texas and have been out in New York and New Jersey for a decade.
When you create, what inspires you?
I think the thing that inspires me most is trying things that I’ve never done before. Taking artistic chances.
Tell us about the specific inspiration behind one or each of your accepted pieces.
This was one of those times I took a chance. I have been fiddling around with “non-fiction poetry” for a while now, inspired by Ed Sanders book, 1968 and William Carlos Williams, Dos Passos, and few others who have mixed journalism and creative writing in their work… I was doing my daily entry for Medskerpedia (my multi-year poetry project based on entries from the Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics) and the poem “1979” happened. It was the condensed version of a newspaper report I read about anti-racist activists getting clobbered by police in London. I thought it was relevant to today, so I did it.
What is your medium of choice? Why?
I don’t know if this is the question you are asking, but lately I’ve been writing solely with my cell phone. It’s sort of the 21st century equivalent of Jack Kerouac constantly scribbling in those tiny pocket notebooks. It’s always there and I jot notes to myself. Sometimes the notes turn into full-blown poems.
How did you first discover your love for creating?
When I was in high-school, I started to make music on my computer, and write bad poetry. My music-making never materialized into anything major, but it really cooled me out after a stressful day. The seeds were really sown then, I think.
fēlan is old English for feel. What makes you feel courage?
Knowing that I have support from my friends and family.

Please feel free to add anything else you think is relevant.
Check out my Medskerpedia page on my website! I think you’ll enjoy it.

Check back May 20 to buy your copy of issue 5!

Submit your own work to issue 6.


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